INSIGHTS

The latest insights into Athlete Career Development, Transitioning and Employer Engagement from the Expert Athlete Career Transition team.

5 ways elite athletes are some of the most invaluable employees to any organisation

Athletes are often overlooked throughout the standard hiring process, but they shouldn’t be, because according to statistics – those with an athletic sporting background can provide a wealth of positive benefits to any organisation. At ACT, we work passionately to project elite athletes into professional, corporate roles where their extensive knowledge and individual skillsets prove invaluable to successful businesses.


We’ve compiled a list of reasons why athletes make for some of the best employees.

They are self-motivated:

Athletes and former athletes are perhaps some of the most self-motivated individuals there are. In fact, motivation is regarded the foundation of all athletic achievement and it’s an imperative quality for those within the sports industry. Professional athletes are those who have worked tirelessly through the challenges of fatigue, endurance, pain and opposition. They have progressed throughout their sporting careers completely aware of the fact that their own self-motivation significantly affects their performance which essentially determines the outcome of the games they compete in.

It is this same motivation that is regarded as highly desirable by employers and business owners when they undertake the hiring process. Athletes are the perfect candidates for ambitious and successful companies who want to bring people into the team that are driven by self-motivation and those who won’t need continuous prompting by their seniors.

They are exceptional team players:

Of course, the very fact that athletes are prolific team players must not be undervalued when contemplating hiring a former sportsperson. Team players are imperative to the effective day-to-day running of any business, however small or large a corporation may be. Athletes are used to making personal sacrifices through their commitment to a team and they understand that a collective of supportive individuals can produce better work and results than a sole individual often can. A former athlete is likely to commit themselves to becoming an integral part of any high-performance team. A teamwork environment provides an atmosphere of friendship and loyalty and the opportunity for groups to motivate one another to strengthen positive results and work ethic. Through hiring an athlete, you can almost be certain you’re choosing to employ someone who truly appreciates the value of teamwork.

They are efficient in time management:

Athletes are super-humans; the kind of people that are so driven by the desire to succeed, that waking up at 6am to perform is no obstacle at all. From a young age, when their interest in sports started to develop, they become uniquely accustomed to delegating time in a busy schedule for their passion. Juggling many aspects of life, from schoolwork, to practice classes, training sessions and tournaments – athletes know everything there is about effective time management strategies before they even reach adulthood. And even then, through the challenges of raising families and young children, handling press events and public speaking opportunities, they still find the time to train and compete. Time management skills are essential for high productivity and good results, and hiring a former athlete ensures you’ll be employing someone who is capable and efficient in meeting those all-important deadlines.

They have resilient attitudes:

There really isn’t much that can deter a strong athlete. Those from high-performance sports backgrounds, are all too familiar with defeat. Many times, throughout their career, they may have lost a game, but in stark contrast to giving into the pressure, elite athletes find ways to battle through to succeed with a stronger performance the next time they play. They are renowned for their resilient nature, persevering through challenge and opposition with sheer determination to win and they learn valuable lessons from past failures. The regular competition, the occasional defeats and the many achievements accomplished, equips athletes with a very resilient attitude which will benefit the workforce of any aspiring business.

They can handle constructive criticism:

Armed with this resilience, former athletes are more than capable of handling constructive criticism. Most athletes are determined to strive and succeed beyond expectation, so they don’t take offence to guidance on improvement. Instead, they will fully utilise the knowledge presented to them and they will work tirelessly and passionately to improve on their future performance. This characteristic is imperative within most areas of business and often, the best employees are those that can acknowledge under-performance, take on-board the advice given and then work hard to achieve their individual goals.

Athlete Career Transition regularly work with businesses and organisations to establish healthy work relationships with some of the most elite, high-performance athletes. To find out more about the athletes we’ve transitioned into the corporate landscape, visit our Athletes section on the website.

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